Maybe not the worst but still….

Neil Gaiman answers the hard questions

The worst teacher I ever had was when I was 16. I was taking some classes at the community college and 1 of the first two I took was Introductory to Geology. She was sooo….ooh, there is definitely not a word to put there.

Her class was the easiest though. She made slideshows and printed them for us but while her class was easy, her labs were not. I was thankful that the class accounted for about 60% of my grade or I might not have passed. Oh well.

Powered by Plinky

Advertisements

Fave Quote

My favorite quote is “I’d rather be hated for who I am than loved for who I am not”.

It reminds me to be true to myself, even if what I am is not what people like. It reminds me that I am totally and uniquely different than others and in a world of fake people, TRUTH is wanted and desired!

Powered by Plinky

Life, liberty and the pursuit

“Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”

These words were first found written in the Declaration of Independence, which was adopted by our Congress on July 4,1776 – the day our nation was born. This sentence contains three of the inalienable rights that we all have as human beings and are the 3 most important ones as well. But what exactly does this mean? Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness? Where, and how does it fit in to my life? Let’s take a look at what each word means and we’ll go from there.

The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines life as:

2 a : the sequence of physical and mental experiences that make up the existence of an individual b : one or more aspects of the process of living

5 a : the period from birth to death b : a specific phase of earthly existence <adult life> c : the period from an event until death <a judge appointed for life> d : a sentence of imprisonment for the remainder of a convict’s life

These are just two of the many definitions it gives. So far, we are entitled to both be born and to die; to have experiences that mold and shape us as we grow; and to just live.

Let’s see what it says about liberty:

1 : the quality or state of being free: a : the power to do as one pleases b : freedom from physical restraint c : freedom from arbitrary or despotic control d : the positive enjoyment of various social, political, or economic rights and privileges e : the power of choice

From this we gather that along with life (having experiences and living), we are entitled to the power of choice(choosing how to live, what to wear, what to eat, etc); the ability to enjoy social, political and/or economic rights; freedom from despotic control.

The ‘pursuit of happiness’ I have broken down into two parts – ‘pursuit’ and ‘happiness’.

pursuit –  1 : the act of pursuing 2 : an activity that one engages in as a vocation, profession, or avocation

happiness – 1 : good fortune : prosperity 2 a : a state of well-being and contentment : joy b : a pleasurable or satisfying experience

Soo…..the pursuit of happiness is being able to pursue what makes you happy, gives you joy, am I correct? You following?

Let’s put it all together – Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness means, “We are allowed to live and have experiences based on our choices as we pursue the things that bring us joy.”

Notice this – it never says we are gonna get whatever makes us happy. We are allowed to pursue it but it never guarantees we’re gonna get it. There is another hidden statement in that phrase – where does one acquire liberty? Remember when this was written and adopted? July 4,1776, where we officially won our freedom, aka liberty, from England in the war known as the Revolutionary War. We fought, yes, war and guts and blood, fought England in order to secure our liberty. The price of freedom is this: the lives that are lost and the blood that is spilled. Every act of peace comes from war. Independence can only be found in peace which comes through war. There has to be war in order for there to be peace. I know I said that three times but I wanted you to get that point.

The entire phrase states this – “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

We are created equal to live and choose as we please. We can choose to disagree or agree with you, love or hate you, whatever but it is our choice. Just because something makes me happy, doesn’t mean that it will make you happy. I’m not gonna shove what I think down your throat or even make you listen, then again, it’s your choice.

How are you gonna define your life, your liberty and your pursuit of happiness?

.

There are two things..

..no, three that I enjoy.

1 – Hanging with my family

2 – Taking pictures of family/friends/life

3 – Enjoying God’s beautiful creation that I capture in every picture

I recently had the opportunity to take some pictures of my friends Casey and her boyfriend, Tony. I met Casey and Tony at Cracker Barrel where we all work and yesterday(Friday), we met at Depot Park in Sanford where I got to see how much they love each other and I felt honored to take pictures of that.

Riddle me this….

….What are the three biggest crimes in the world??

Rape? Murder? Bullying? Dictatorship? If you guessed any of these, you’re wrong. Dead wrong.

In order, they are: Arms dealing, drug dealing/trafficking and human trafficking. Every year, 250-300 thousand children/women/teens are sold into human trafficking. Many are never heard from again. Most are sold for sex. Some of them are as young as 2 or 3. Some are sold to pay off debts, others for more money to buy drugs/alcohol. For many, it will be the only life they will ever know. And don’t think that girls are the only ones who fall prey to it – boys are victims of this too. And don’t fall prey to the myth that because you and I live in America that we’re free of this crime – Many victims are either sold out of this country or bought into this country through human trafficking. Some victims brought into the United States are sold unwittingly into the trade. They’ll be from Asia, India, the Middle East, Russia, etc and want a better life in America so they’ll make a deal for ‘free’ passage into the U.S. only to get here and find out they’ve been sold, sometimes for life.

Every day, children disappear, lives are forever stolen, and we sit here thinking it’s all a big lie. A myth. A hoax. Many will never be found. Those that are, will never live a ‘normal’ life.

Let me give you some facts – you’ve already heard one.

600,000 – 800,000 people are bought and sold across international borders each year; 50% are children, most are female. The majority of these victims are forced into the commercial sex trade.   – U.S. Department of State, 2004, Trafficking in Persons Report, Washington, D.C.

An estimated 14,500 to 17,500 foreign nationals are trafficked into the United States each year. The number of U.S. citizens trafficked within the country is even higher, with an estimated 200,000 American children at risk for trafficking into the sex industry.   – U.S Department of Justice Report to Congress from Attorney General John Ashcroft on U.S. Government Efforts to Combat Trafficking in Persons

Investigators and researchers estimate the average predator in the U.S. can make more than $200,000 a year off one young girl.  – NBC Report by Teri Williams

Now add that up – 200,000 dollars x 250,000 children = 50 billion dollars per year. We’re assuming only 200 grand and 250,000 children/women/teens. What if 200 grand is the minimum per year? What if the estimate of 250,000 is way off?? How much is being made here? How much could be put to a better use? How many children can we save? The questions are endless and so are the lives that can be saved. Many people have already asked these questions and are listed below:

Michael Fletcher – www.coinsforchildren.com

SCTNow – www.sctnow.org